Saturday, August 19, 2017

Perhaps it's best to ignore them

Charlottesville was horrible... truly horrible.  And there were more white supremacist rallies planned for this weekend, across the country.  Fortunately, most of them were cancelled.  Sadly, Boston has decided to allow the scheduled rally to go forward.. as well as the counterprotest rally.

People!  These Nazi/KKK/white supremacists events are rallies.  And the likelihood of them drawing people to their cause - people who aren't already on their side, are slim.  That likelihood gets slimmer if no one knows about the rally, and it stays just a rally.

The Charlottesville got a lot of media attention, including social media attention.  I'm sure David Duke was absolutely delighted to see his tweets plastered all over the national news.

Like you, I am outraged ... absolutely outraged ... at what these groups are doing.  I find it absolutely inconceivable that someone could align themselves with these groups.  But I have to acknowledge that --  if the Charlottesville counterprotesters had stayed home... I don't think we'd be seeing Duke's hateful words on our television screens.

No, I'm absolutely NOT blaming this on the counterprotesters... not at all.  But...
I think it's time to change strategies.

Remember when you were a child, and your sibling was annoying you... not with what they were doing, but with what they were saying?  And your mother would say "Just ignore them."  I'm not talking about the pushing and shoving and other potentially harmful action... I'm talking about things like repeating everything you said, or disputing everything you said, or saying things they knew would make you mad.  Free speech sorts of things.

And... if you could force yourself to quit responding...  pretty soon your sibling would get bored and move on.

Yes, it was a childish game... but these white supremacists are acting in a childish manner.

Perhaps... just maybe... if we ignored them... if we didn't show up at their rallies, we didn't counterprotest, we didn't put it on the news... maybe they'd get bored.

I'm not suggesting we turn a blind eye to their actions, I'm not suggesting we turn our backs on them, and I am not suggesting we let them do anything other than talk.

But while they're only talking, and until/unless they do more than talking.. perhaps it's best to ignore them.

Yes, I know it will be difficult.. but we can all take a lesson from Tina Fey and eat cake.
And drink tea.

Thursday, August 3, 2017

The Thing About Birthday Cakes

I came across something interesting this afternoon, and thought it worth sharing.

Remember how - when you were little, and you had a birthday, somebody would make/buy a birthday cake?  And there would be candles on top of the birthday cake -- one for each year, of course.

And those candles would be lit... and then you'd try to blow all the candles out in one breath.

And you'd succeed, of course .. even if you had to cheat just a little... and everyone would clap.  Then the cake would be cut into pieces, and the pieces would be passed around, and everybody would eat birthday cake.

And then everyone would get deathly ill.

Oh wait --- that's NOT how your birthdays went?  Gee, that's not how my birthdays went, either.

Well, maybe we were just lucky.

I mean, really... think about it.  We no longer cover our noses and mouths with our hands when we sneeze or cough, because it's been determined that it's more sanitary to sneeze/cough into our own elbow, or arm.  So why on earth would we put food in front of someone and say to them.. "Ok, now, I want you to blow on this food, as hard as you can...for several seconds.  And if the candles aren't all blown out, then either you can sneak a little breath and blow some more, or else... I know!!  We'll ALL blow on this food.  And THEN.. we'll all eat it.

Well now you can quit worry about this unhealthy practice, because there's a guy who filed a patent for a "Sanitary birthday cake cover and candle system".  It's a thing that goes over the cake.. and the cover has these indentations for the candles.. so you can put the candles in the indentations without them ever touching the cake, and then you can blow out the candles and remove the cover  and Voila!  you've got a germ-free cake.

Wow.  What a concept.
Yet, try as I might, I can't seem to find a place to purchase a sanitary birthday cake cover and candle system.  And it's not just because this is a new idea.. the patent was filed in 2008.  There have even been six more patent applications by different people for slight variations on the original patent.. the most recent being just six months ago.

And yet somehow, this idea hasn't caught on.

Hmmm.. I detect a note of skepticism in your eye.. a bit of a raised eyebrow at this silly discussion. Don't be quite so quick to dismiss the concern. In 2013, Australia's National Health and Medical Research Council declared that children should no longer be allowed to blow out candles on a birthday cake, and suggested that if parents wish to give their child the traditional experience, they should provide a separate cupcake with a candle.

Well...  after some pondering, I've decided that I'm willing to take my chances on birthday cake germs.  For all we know, frosting is some magical antibacterial that no one knows about... because - think about it... Have you ever heard of a bunch of people  - children or adults - getting sick after eating birthday cake?  Of course not.

So I'm going to continue eating birthday cake - whether or not it's had candles, and whether or not those candles have been lit, and then blown out.  And of course with my cake, I'll have some tea.

Monday, June 26, 2017

Summer is here!

Haven't blogged a lot, lately.  I discovered that too many ideas for my blog posts, and too many of my actual posts, were political.  That's not what I want this blog to be... so I took a break.

BUT!  Summer is here... a time for new beginnings .. a time to start over.

How do I know summer is here?  Well, I suppose I could check with the local group of druids  (except that they died off, years ago)..  or I could take a peek at Stonehenge  (no.. wouldn't have to go to England for that, there are two dozen stonehenges in the US).. or I could check any one of a large number of sources, which would indicate that summer began last week.  But I prefer a more naturalistic approach.

Last week, I came home, pulled into my usual spot alongside the driveway, and shut off the engine. Suddenly, a bunny hopped out from the shrubs and ran in front of my car, and into the woods.  A bunny!  Some years we see bunnies, some years we do not.. but this was the first bunny of the year. I'd post a picture except -- come on, bunnies are fast!  So you'll have to take my word for it... but you know what a bunny looks like.

The very next morning, as I stood at the bathroom sink brushing my teeth, I looked out the window and saw a small deer eating grass.  A deer!  I raced downstairs to get to my phone and a door without a screen.. and snapped some photos... including a picture of the deer eating the lower branches of my cherry tree.  Sigh.  Yes, I had seen the damage to the branches and leaves.. and now I knew the cause for certain.  The deer spent quite some time browsing the backyard greenery.  And I spent quite some time watching the deer.

Watching the deer made me a bit late.. but a block from the house I had to let a wild turkey and about half a dozen turkey chicks cross the road!  I would have taken the time to snap a picture, but I was running late.  As I drove by... I realized that the turkey and chicks were crossing the road -- not just to get to the other side, but to join another wild turkey, with perhaps a dozen chicks!  Truly, there was a yard full of little baby turkey chicks!  Sadly, I did not get a picture.  I realize you might not know what turkey chicks look like.. they're similar to chicken chicks.. but different.  So I've hunted high and low  (well, not really, I just typed a few search terms)  to find the following pic .. which is pretty close to what I saw.. if you double this.

So -- If signs from Mother Nature come in 3s... there you have it.  Three animal sightings in less than 24 hours.
What did I tell you?  Summer is here!

And so am I.  Happy to be back in my blog
Just in case you wondered... I always drink tea, whether I'm blogging or not.